Category: Albums of the 00s

John Doe and the Sadies ‘Country Club’

Song Of the Day by Eric Berman – “Stop The World And Let Me Off” by John Doe & The Sadies I got an email a few weeks ago from Yep Roc Records alerting me to a $5.00 CD sale they were having for a limited time. Well, since I may be one of the last few hold outs in music for physical product over downloads, I couldn’t pass up a look see to find out what they had to offer. Well, several of the featured titles were interesting to me, and at that price I figured how could I go wrong, so I took the plunge and ordered myself a handful of semi-new music. The $5.00 treats that...

Sparks ‘Lil Beethoven’

Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “I Married Myself” by Sparks American brothers Ron and Russell Mael formed the group Halfnelson in 1970. Their first two albums were recorded in Woodstock, New York, produced by Todd Rundgren and released on the Bearsville record label. Both records tanked on these shores, so the brothers broke up the band, changed their name to Sparks, moved to England, got on the glam bandwagon and formed a new band that has gone on to endure for decades. In a musical world dominated by David Bowie, Mott The Hoople, Lou Reed, The New York Dolls and Queen, the newly reformed Sparks caused a sensation across the pond in 1974 with songs like...

Sun Kil Moon ‘Ghosts of the Great Highway’

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#848 in the Series) is Sun Kil Moon, Ghosts Of The Great Highway Ghosts Of The Great Highway is a wondrous creation. A work of great depth, texture and perception, it is, without doubt, a masterpiece. I’ve been listening to it almost constantly now for about 3 weeks and not only do I never tire of hearing it, I simply cannot find a thing about it that I don’t like. From the cover art to the singers voice to the songs (10 of them, some long, some short, mostly acoustic, sometimes electric, engaging, compelling and enthralling), it’s all good. Great album’s come about in all sorts of different ways of course and one...

The Black Keys ‘Rubber Factory’

  Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#835 in the Series) is The Black Keys, Rubber Factory The Black Keys have enjoyed quite a bit of success as of late. They received five nominations for the 55th Grammy Awards, tour relentlessly, and just about everybody has heard of them. This wasn’t always the case. Their first three albums began somewhat under the radar. Rubber Factory is their third album and what some people still claim is the best release they’ve had so far. If someone ever asks me what The Black Keys sound like, I always point them to this album. In a nutshell it is blues rock with an unrelenting drive and passion. When I was growing up I...

Johnny Cash “American III: Solitary Man”

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “The Mercy Seat” by Johnny Cash By the year 2000 and the third album in the American series, Johnny Cash had reestablished himself as one of the greatest singers, not just in country music, but in all music. Producer, Rick Rubin, began working with him several years before and allowed Johnny Cash do what he did best in the studio…be JOHNNY CASH! Cash began working with Rick Rubin in 1994. Rubin was the founder  of Def Jam Records, and was responsible for producing seminal recordings by Public Enemy and The Beastie Boys. It must have taken quite a leap of faith for Johnny Cash to, not only work with Rick...

The Mumlers ‘Don’t Throw Me Away’

    Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#827 in the Series) is The Mumlers, Don’t Throw Me Away Don’t Throw Me Away is release number two from The Mumlers.  What impresses me about this album is its uncanny ability to feel old and fresh often at the same time.  It is difficult to label their style as there are elements of jazz, folk, and psychedelia all mixed together.  If I had to pick something I would say folk with some creole jazz backing.  A lot of the vocals have a lo-fi sound which fits perfectly into their retro sound.  Their style isn’t to force the music onto people or to catch you with one or two catchy guitar...

Wilco ‘Kicking Television: Live in Chicago’

    Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Company In My Back” (Live Version from Kicking Television) by Wilco Live albums. They are the most maligned recordings by critics, yet the fans just love them. You don’t believe me? Ask Peter Frampton, The Allman Brothers, Led Zeppelin, Yes, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Neil Young, Neil Diamond, Little Feat, The Who, Lou Reed, Cheap Trick and Kiss to name a few, who have made classic live albums and have benefitted from huge sales. Heck, live albums are so ingrained in our pop culture, that you can probably name each of the live albums I’m referring to above, just by the list of artists. In the...

Eels ‘Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “That Look You Gave That Guy” by Eels Eels are capable of bone-chilling, howlin’-at-the-moon, terrifyin’ rock and roll, and when they are in that mode, they are at their very best. But Eels also have a tender side too, as exemplified by this superb ballad from the 2009 album Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs Of Desire. For those that don’t already know, Eels are the handiwork of one Mark Oliver Everett (aka “E”), and whomever he chooses to work with at any particular time. For Lobo, Everett’s co-conspirators were Koool G Murder on bass and Knuckles on drums. The album came after a four year layoff, and was the first (and...

Todd Rundgren ‘Arena’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Bardo” by Todd Rundgren I’m kind of stuck in the middle of a Todd Rundgren jag at the moment. And if you’re a Todd fan, there are many reasons to be excited. With the recent releases of not one, but two new live recordings of the classic albums Todd (originally released in 1974)and Healing (1980) both from his recent tour, plus the belated appearance of the 1976 Utopia album Disco Jets, I guess I just can’t seem to get enough of that Todd stuff. It’s led me to revisit some albums from his catalog that I haven’t heard in a while. Once such album is his 2008 album, Arena, which,...

William Parker ‘Petit Oiseau’

  Song Of The Day by Eric Berman – “Talaps Theme” by William Parker Difficult listening doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s all about perception, and with the ability to just let it all wash over you with an open mind, difficult listening can be real easy. Case in point is bassist William Parker’s 2008 free jazz album Petit Oiseau. Parker has one of the best working bands in Jazz today. Along with longtime percussionist Hamid Drake, Parker acts as the catalyst of The William Parker Quartet, driving the proceedings with his percussive approach to the double bass and sustaining the tension between saxophonist Rob Brown’s sharp tones and trumpeter Lewis Barnes’ muted beauty. Even when the band is...

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